Marcel Wanders: Pinned Up at the Stedelijk
By PAUL LASTER, JUN 2014
'Less is more' is a state of pathological delusion. – Marcel Wanders
The largest-ever survey of one of the Netherlands’ most distinguished designers, Marcel Wanders: Pinned Up at the Stedelijk offers 25 years of design from the celebrated product, furniture, jewelry and interior designer and art director. The dynamic exhibition, organized by the Stedelijk Museum’s Curator of Industrial Design Ingeborg de Roode, displays more than 400 objects spanning Wanders’ entire body of work, produced between the late-1980s and now. The show also features photographs of interiors, design sketches, prototypes, experimental work in small editions, sculptural objects developed for special projects, and new experimental digital creations of virtual interiors.
Marcel Wanders: Pinned Up at the Stedelijk (February 1 – June 15, 2014) consists of three parts: a White Zone, which offers an analysis of Wanders’ work based on 10 themes (such as craftsmanship, narratives and dialogues, surface, innovation, archetypes, variation, and playing with scale;) a Black Zone presenting work of a more personal and often experimental nature in a theatrical setting; and a lounge where Wanders’ role as art director for design brands, including Moooi, is explored.
“Marcel Wanders is a creative and innovative force as a designer, driven by a clear and distinctive vision from the very start of his career to create an extraordinary and sustainable environment through design,” says Ingeborg de Roode. “Sustainability comes from users building relationships with his products, cherishing them rather than discarding them.”
The cocoon-like lamp Zeppelin is featured in the Upcycling Memories section of the white zone. Set Up Shades, a light design made from standard white lampshades is included in (Re)discovering Archetypes. Airborne Snotty Vases, which are digital 3D printed vases based on massively magnified human snot, are standouts from Stories and Dialogues. The Depth of Surface highlights the Knotted Chair and the Lace Table, which are made from fibers secured with epoxy resins. Quiet Things include the Wanders Wonders Lighting collection. Humanizing the Product features the Sponge Vase. Crochet Chair is a standout in The Hidden Engineer part of the White Zone. The Theatre of Making includes Topiaries. Egg Vase is a highlight of the Professional Doll’s House section. And, Unexpected Turn features the Dressed cutlery, which is decorated only on the back, so that the pattern is felt before it is seen.
Wanders’ more autonomous work is featured in a theatrical presentation in the Black Zone, which centers on the relationships between objects, videos, sound and space with music by Dutch avant-garde composer JacobTV (Jacob Ter Veldhuis). The Dark Zone also includes eight surreal digital videos from the talented designer’s Virtual Interiors series.
Paul Laster is a writer, editor, independent curator, artist and lecturer. He is a New York desk editor at ArtAsiaPacific and a contributing editor at Whitehot and artBahrain. He was the founding editor of Artkrush.com and Artspace.com and art editor of Flavorpill.com and Russell Simmons's OneWorld Magazine; started TheDailyBeast.com's art section; and worked as a photojournalist for Artnet.com and Art in America. He is a frequent contributor to Time Out New York, New York Observer, Modern Painters, ArtPulse and ArtInfo.com.view all articles from this author